Series: The Stand

There was a man with us some of the time; he was a dark man. I was looking through the rear-view mirror and I'd see him just sitting there, grinning at me. I thought I could outrun him... you can't outrun the dark man.

A 1994 four-part Mini Series version of Stephen King's book The Stand, Starring Molly Ringwald, and Gary Sinese.

The miniseries contains examples of:

  • Animal Motifs: One of the forms Randall Flagg assumes is a Creepy Crow.
  • Artistic License Biology: The intro setpiece pans over the dead researchers as "Don't Fear The Reaper" plays. Many of them appear to have simply dropped dead where they sat, something no virus can accomplish and which Captain Trips doesn't do to its later victims once escaped. This is given a brief handwave, when it's discussed that the pure strain is what did them in.
  • California Doubling: Closing the Lincoln Tunnel in New York for filming would have been insane, so instead they used the Armstrong Tunnels in Pittsburgh.
  • Cameo: Several in the miniseries, including Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (as the "monster shouter"), Joe Bob Briggs, Sam Raimi, and John Landis. Also included uncredited appearances by Ed Harris and Kathy Bates.
  • Composite Character:
    • Nadine and Rita's stories are merged in the series.
    • Some of Nadine's sub-plots were transferred to Lucy, most notably being the one who found and cared for Joe/Leo Rockway.
    • Doctors Dietz and Elder.
    • Compressed Adaptation: To a point. The Boulder section is truncated, as well as Stu and Tom's return home.
  • Creator Cameo: King appears in the last two episodes as Teddy Weizak, one of the Boulder residents who discovers Stu in the final chapter.
  • Death by Adaptation: In the book Major Len Creighton's eventual fate is deliberately left vague raising the possibility he survived. In the series it is heavily implied he will die from the superflu, as one of his subordinates is shown to be infected while a disconsolate Creighton is cradling Starkey's corpse.
  • Driven to Suicide: General Starkey, once it is clear that the virus (developed by Project Blue, of which he was in charge) is out of control and billions are going to die. Small wonder that before his suicide he pins a piece of paper to his full dress uniform, with one word written on it: "GUILTY".
  • Empathy Doll Shot: In the opening credits, as the doll dropped by Campion's daughter lays on the ground... and is being pecked at by a crow.
    • A Callback to this happens in the second part: while "Don't Dream It's Over" plays on the soundtrack, we see many shots of abandoned places. One of these is a teddy bear washing back and forth with the tide near the boardwalk (presumably in Ogunquit).
  • The End of the World as We Know It: In one episode, Larry Underwood actually plays guitar and sings Barry Mcguire's "Eve of Destruction," a song about the End Of The World, on the outskirts of Des Moines. Which was on fire.
  • Fanservice: Several panty shots over the course of the series.
  • Gender Flip:
    • Fran's child, Peter, is Abagail in the miniseries.
    • The one-scene character of Ray Flowers becomes Rae Flowers.
  • Jump Scare: One pops up near the end of Stuart's dream in the first episode.
    • Another follows shortly when the doctor who tried to kill Stu turns out not to be dead, after all, and attacks him from behind. And then there's the dead doctor who falls out of the elevator after Stu investigates what's inside.
  • Large Ham: A few in the miniseries, notably Matt Frewer as Trashcan Man and Laura San Giacomo as Nadine.
  • The Mountains of Illinois: Trashcan Man's arson incidents in Gary, Indiana and Des Moines, Iowa, are both shown with rugged mountains in the background, because they were filmed in New Mexico.
    • Particularly amusing are the shots of huge mountains in the background as Arnette, TX is quarantined and evacuated. These scenes were shot in Salt Lake City, UT.
  • The Power of Rock: At the end of the third episode, Larry is shown taking his guitar (and nothing else) to Las Vegas. A loaded six-string may not help with the forces of darkness...
    Rat-Man: (smashes guitar) Disco is dead!!
  • Pragmatic Adaptation: In order to get the mini-series greenlighted, King had to cull the darker aspects of the novel for network TV, which in turn led to some decent revisions of the story: removing the "female zoo" sequence and expanding upon Nadine and Larry's relationship as far as the two hooking up in the city rather than once Larry's former companion died.
  • Pretty Little Headshots: When the Judge is shot. You can see the bullet holes, but it's nothing like the book description where there was nothing left of his face. Considering the whole reason Flagg was angry at his men was that he wanted the face to be recognizable, this made the scene make a lot less sense.
    • Averted in the comic adaptation, in which the Judge's face is destroyed.
  • Race Lift: Joe/Leo Rockway is a white kid in the miniseries version.
  • Real Men Eat Meat: In the miniseries version, when Larry asks Nadine how she wants her steak cooked, she says "just run it through a warm room" in a tomboyish moment.
  • Repressive But Efficient: Las Vegas under Flagg.
  • Scary Black Man: Kareem Abdul-Jabbar played the "Monster Shouter" in the mini-series.
  • Sound-Only Death: Rae Flowers is killed offscreen when a group of soldiers break into her studio and gun her down, while Fran is listening to the broadcast.
  • Tempting Fate: "Piece of cake!". In the miniseries, he says it three times while climbing the washout.
  • Vagueness Is Coming: In the miniseries, Abagail helpfully informs the heroes: "The Beast is loose in the fields of Bethlehem. The rats are in the corn!" She also says: